How to get started with healthy meal prepping
Recently, I’ve had an increase in questions around how to lose weight. This is obviously a large topic, and honestly, it comes down to preparation.
The saying of “Failing to prepare is preparing to fail” is so true when it comes to weight loss. So, let’s start with meal preparation!
There are a lot of good reasons to consider meal prepping as part of your weekly routine.
Put simply, meal prepping is cooking meals in large batches, then portioning them out as your meals for the week.
Meal prepping is great for:
- Sticking to a diet;
- Staying within a budget;
- Healthy meal options when you’re time-poor;
- Avoiding takeaway; and
- Ticking off all your healthy food groups.
The list could get longer, but the benefits are clear.
If you’re a beginner, the idea of meal prepping might seem daunting and like a lot of work. But once you’ve got the hang of it, it’ll fast become a natural part of your routine.
Here are a few tips to get you started.
The first step to meal prepping is to plan what you want to eat for the week and include the amount and type of ingredients you’ll need.
This will form as both your shopping list and recipe cards, allowing you to budget for the expense and time it will take to cook.
Hint: there are a lot of great apps on the market built to help you plan your meal prepping.
Start off small and simple
You don’t need to buy a chef’s outfit and transform your kitchen into a commercial food prep space. Start off small and simple by prepping one or two dinners for the next few nights, then gradually working your way up to a level that suits your time, budget, and energy.
Set a “prepping day”
Most people usually opt for a Sunday as meal prep day ahead of the work week and when they have the most time to shop and cook. Whichever day works best for you, schedule it in for both grocery shopping, batch cooking, and container packing.
Get yourself good-quality containers
You’ll be using a lot of containers that will be exposed to microwaves and dishwashers frequently, so investing in good-quality containers that are appropriately sized will be worthwhile. The best option is glassware containers as they are the most durable, hygienic, and dependable for frequent use.
Select a good spread of foods
Planning and prepping your meals comes with the advantage of choosing exactly what goes into your food, so you can make good choices in the recommended portions for vegetables, fruits, and meats or proteins.
You also want to make sure you’re choosing foods that keep/reheat well across the course of the week. These can include frozen vegetables, fresh whole fruits, hearty greens, lean proteins such as chicken, pork, beef, canned fish, tofu, and eggs, nuts and seeds, and healthy pulses such as beans, lentils, and chickpeas •